nov2020newsletter headerV3

Homologation Comes to the Valley

Government Peak Recreation Area is now one of only a few dozen homologated Nordic race venues in the entire USA. The FIS has certified three race courses at GPRA; a 1.3km Sprint Course, a 5 km course, and a 7.5 km course.
The FIS is the governing body for high-level Nordic ski racing around the world. Homologation entails meeting an incredibly persnickety set of specifications for steepness of hills, arrangement of flats to hills, how the corners work, width of trails, as well as facilities, spectator control, and a host of other particulars.
Getting to this level is the result of years of effort by Mat-Su Ski Club volunteers and generous donors. Building the Denali Loop in 2017 was a key ingredient. Thanks to John Estle, of the Fairbanks North Star Ski Club; he is the Alaska unit of the FIS. His time and efforts were essential for the final steps of bringing home this bacon.
7.5km GPRA course

Race to the Outhouse #1

Mat-Su Ski Club's annual Race to the Outhouse #1 will be at Independence Mine this year on Saturday, November 14th. The course is 3.4 km long, but takes the energy of a 5k.

Registration starts at 9:30am in the parking lot. Interval race starts will be from 10:00am to 11:30am. Classic, Skate, or Skiathlon - racers choice. Cost is FREE.

Bring your own pen or pencil to sign in! Other Covid adjustments including an interval start, mask-wearing for non-racing people, and conscientious social distancing will be in place.

Timing will be provided by Mat-Su Ski Club. Thanks to the generous donations of MSSC members we have new timing equipment from Zone 4. Thanks to Lori Berrigan and Jeff Kase for setting that up. We will be testing our new timing equipment from Zone 4 along with backup tape timers. If you are interested in learning the timing system and would like to work with Lori and Jeff, please email Lori at

Blue Crew Volunteers, we will need you this Saturday! Email to help with this event. Go Blue Crew!


State Parking Pass

Alaska State Park Day Use 2021 parking stickers are for sale online now at
The 2021 stickers are effective immediately.
State Park rangers are asking people to control their dogs in the Independence Mine parking lot and around the trailhead, and to clean up after their dogs.

Upcoming Ski Events

Friday, November 27th is the 1st annual Turkey Trax brought to you by the Mat-Su Ski Club and the Palmer Moose Nordic Ski Team Booster Club. This community race will have interval starts this year, from 11 AM tp 2 PM.

MSSC is hosting a Moonlight Ski Tour on Saturday, November 28th as well. More details will be available soon at

New Mat-Su Ski Club Board Members

Say hi to the two new members of the Mat-Su Ski Club board of directors: Kim Taylor and Ben Raevsky.

Kim Taylor has been a Valley resident for 25 years. In the past, she has worked with the Palmer Moose Nordic Ski Team booster club. Kim is a Registered Nurse who enjoys skiing, hiking, and walking her dogs at GPRA.


Ben Raevsky moved to the Valley after retiring as a wild land firefighter. He currently operates a vacation rental and works at the bike shop in town. Ben has been skiing since he was young and has a love for the outdoor opportunities Alaska affords.

Dave Musgrave

The board is going to miss Dave Musgrave, a past President and long-time member of the Mat-Su Ski Club board of directors. He was key to starting our Junior Nordics program, and one of the people responsible for building the Club to what it is today. So say thanks if you bump into him on the trails.

Icicle Double

Icicle Double is the Mat-Su Ski Club's premier race series, on the weekend after Christmas. Ya oughta try it out!
More info at

MatSuIDwith logos

Final Junior Nordics Rental

The final ski pick up for those who signed up for Mat-Su Junior Nordics is November 12th at 5:30. This is planned to be a quick event, so it's important to sign up here if you plan to come!

A check is required for the refundable deposit ($150 per pair of skis). Cash, check, or credit card are accepted for the rental payment, but cash and check are preferred, as the card reader picks and chooses whether or not it works in cold weather!

Loaner Ski Chariots

Mat-Su Ski Club loans out single and double ski chariots for towing kids around the trails. Chariots are available for two weeks with the option of renewing, and are available to the public for FREE! For more info, click here!

Limited Edition Trail Pins

We have a batch of trail pins for just this season. If you already bought one, you can pick it up at Backcountry Bike & Ski in downtown Palmer, or at most Mat-Su Ski Club events. Get yours here.
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